A woman has walked free after her two dogs savaged a nine-year-old girl, leaving her with injuries so horrific she required plastic surgery.
Michelle Louise Simpson, 51, was charged with unlawful wounding after her two American Staffordshire Pitbulls attacked the girl at a park in Bassendean, Perth, in September last year.
When Simpson pleaded guilty to a charge of unlawful wounding at Perth Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday, she was handed an eight-month jail term suspended for twelve months.
Michelle Louise Simpson, 51, (right) pictured outside Perth Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday
She was the first person in Western Australia to be charged with wounding because of the actions of an animal, Perth Now reported.
Simpson’s two dogs, Ozzy and Stevie, viciously mauled nine-year-old Kaitlyn Goddard while they were off-leash at a Park in Eden Hill.
Stevie locked her jaws around Kaitlyn’s face, while Ozzy attacked her legs.
Simpson told the girl to ‘stop screaming and lay still’ in an attempt to stop the attack, but her efforts failed to prevent serious injury.
Kaitlyn sustained multiple puncture wounds to her skull, and was left with leg wounds so deep her muscles and tendons were exposed.
She required two rounds of plastic surgery to her legs.
The girl was viciously mauled by the two dogs while she was playing at a Perth park on September 9, suffering serious injuries to her face, head and right leg
The injuries on her leg exposed her muscles and tendons and the bites left her with multiple puncture wounds to her skull
Simpson’s two dogs, Ozzy and Stevie, viciously mauled nine-year-old Kaitlyn Goddard while they were off-leash at a Park in Eden Hill
When Simpson appeared in court on Wednesday, magistrate Stephen Heath said an immediate jail term was ‘not out of the question’.
‘This highlights the responsibility dog owners always must have for the actions of their pets,’ he said.
Simpson expressed her remorse in an apology to the young victim.
In a victim impact statement, Kaitlyn told the court she suffered physical and psychological scars from the attack.
She said she suffered from nightmares and a fear of animals, particularly dogs.
She also claimed to suffer confidence issues as a result of the scarring she was left with.
When Simpson (right) appeared in court on Wednesday, magistrate Stephen Heath said an immediate jail term was ‘not out of the question’
The dogs were put down after the owner surrendered them to the council after media attention to the case
The dog attack took place at Success Hill Reserve in Perth’s eastern suburbs (pictured)
Perth Magistrate’s Court heard the attack was the third launched by the two pitbulls in the past year.
The dogs reportedly mauled a Golden Retriever at Floreat Beach in August 2015 and attacked two 17-year-old girls at Success Hill in August 2016, leaving them terrified and suffering from bite wounds.
Simpson’s two dogs were euthanised after she surrendered them to the council following their attack on nine-year-old Kaitlyn.
Kaitlyn was with her three brothers when the dogs pinned her to the ground and began to savagely bite her until her 16-year-old brother pulled her away
The attack came just three weeks after the same two dogs mauled a teenager (pictured) in the same park